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Verdi, Vidi, ViciSteven LynchMay 21, 2014
Is it possible for a female horse to win the Epsom Derby? asked Peter Rice
It is possible, yes - and indeed it has happened on six occasions. But they were all a long time ago - the last was Fifinella in 1916, and she followed Eleanor (1801), Blink Bonny (1857), Shotover (1882), Signorinetta (1908) and Tagalie (1912).
Fifinella also won the Oaks, and these days it's more likely that a promising filly would be steered towards that - and it's not really possible to run in both any more as the races are currently on successive days at Epsom.
Having said that, the occasional filly does attempt the Derby. In 1998 Cape Verdi, the 1000 Guineas winner, actually started as the 11-4 favourite for the big race at Epsom, but trailed in only ninth in a race won by the 20-1 shot High-Rise. No filly has raced in the Derby since then.
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